Think London logo

“Think London’s job is to sell the city as a location to the world’s businesses. ‘Forget Paris, Berlin, Beijing, set up in London instead’ is their pitch. So how do you distill all that London has to offer into 1 symbol? Well, you don’t. You use 45. We twisted the famous skyline 180 degrees into a reflection and made a new skyline out of all the other factors that would help you choose the city.”

The reflection shows elements from the real London skyline, whereas the upper skyline contains the new symbols.

It’s the most detailed logo I’ve seen in some time, which is one reason why I’m not overly keen. Update: Here’s an explanatory comment that helps me see a different side to the design…

“…the message I think this logo intends to send is, “London is a cool place with a lot of things happening – we don’t just stand for one famous building or bridge – you can’t even count the amazing things there are to do in this big city.” A potential traveler would come away with the idea that London is busy, bustling and a lot of fun.”

Think London brochure

View the logo’s 17 steps to heaven (alternative logo details), and the Think London website transforms elements from the logo into icons that direct attention.

London Mayor Boris Johnson is inviting rebrand tenders.

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February 4, 2009


The idea of many silhouettes merged into one image is kind of overused… and things like giant forks, trees, guitars and eolic turbines seem weird when put together. But i do like the concept of reflecting landmarks into icons representing services and businesses. But it’s a little too much, in my opinion.

This is one of my absolute favourite recent logos – its a strong concept and executed so perfectly. I’d never really looked into the actual organisation or their other materials but the video and their website are both strong and contribute to a effective consistency to things.

I’m not sure how well it works at smaller sizes but its perfectly legible so for me the beauty of the large size is worth it.

To be honest I’ve not seen a Johnson Banks logo that I don’t like – particularly the excellent Shelter one.

Sure, it’s a little busy. You can get away with that sometimes if the application is done well enough. This is one of those circumstances. I actually love what they did here.

Lately, there seems to be comments supporting, sometime even a statement saying they are “in love” with obviously broken and unusable (or just ugly) logos just because it managed to look pretty while being incorporated into stationary, folders, or whatever application the firm want to show us.

But logos supposed to be timeless. It should be beautiful even on a fax paper, hat, pen, and even coffee mug, in a way that the design firm that designed it doesn’t have to supervise.

This one, even the execution is weird. The logo is like another poster within a poster.

I don’t even want to see the business card.

I just read my own comment and I just want to say I wasn’t aiming at anyone else’s comments above. Obviously you are free to like any logo you want.


The video makes me like the logo more (though it still seems far too busy to be memorable), but I think even the video could have used some editing. Trying too hard. At half that length it would have more impact—and at half the complexity, so would the logo, IMO.




I agree how the icons seems strange when all shown together. Is it that their combination in a logo is so different that the design actually works, or is it simply too detailed to be memorable? You can’t remember the individual pieces, and how they’re placed, but the London icons are obvious when large enough to be made-out.


Cheers for sharing. Was that a promotional poster you created? I like the contrast.


The consistency definitely helps, though I’m not as convinced as you are about the success. I thought there’d be split opinion on this design — one reason for featuring it. You make a good point about the type being legible at small sizes, regardless of the element detail.


Of course, we’re all entitled to our opinions, and I appreciate yours. I believe our ideas on what makes a great design are very similar.


There was a section in the middle of the video where I thought the music was overlapping, and it sounded odd. I think you’re right how it could be shortended, and be more effective.

Jared, Donna,

Thanks for commenting.

More London promotion. It’s everywhere!

I like the concept, but the silhouettes and the colour scheme reminds me of the ad campaign for East Midlands Trains who, funnily enough, advertise cheap train tickets to London.

A bit off-topic, but I was in London at the weekend and did a lot of travelling on the tube, where I spent most of my time oggling at the underground map and it’s beautiful simplicity.

I’ve got to be honest, I was falling asleep. They could have sped the whole thing up and used some punchier music. I’d also like to see them produce that logo smaller than 2″ wide. Good luck reversing those details out of that dark blue background.

Maybe overused as the first two commenters say, but I still love it. The version for printed material looks great, plus the concept is good.

The reason I liked this enough to send it you, David, is because I thought it ‘worked’. Let’s try to look at this through the audience’s eyes. A busy logo and not too memorable in a sense because of that, but the message I think this logo intends to send is, “London is a cool place with a lot of things happening – we don’t just stand for one famous building or bridge – you can’t even count the amazing things there are to do in this big city.” A potential traveler would come away with the idea that London is busy, bustling and a lot of fun. I think that message was delivered magnificently in this mark.


I’ve seen some very artistic adaptations of the underground map. I’ll have to see if I can find them.


Thanks for the explanation. It helps shine a different light on the design for me, and in retrospect, I’m more fond of it. I should’ve asked you in the first place what your thoughts were about the logo!

Cheers for the comments everyone.

Funny one this for me. Yael has a great point regarding the number of things that can be done and achieved around London, apart from the obvious visual handles. The problem I have with this is that they’ve tried to incorporate and convey so much into the logo and the video in particular that you lose the point and ultimately lose interest (in the video). I do like the approach and the execution is great but considering the sheer size of the message, I don’t think this really comes across as ‘big’ as it probably should.

Full marks for what must have been an absolute pig of a project. I don’t envy them in the slightest.

There’s a whiff of Barclays bank from the other year too.

After reading both the article and comments, I also do feel it is busy, but it is something out of the blue. (not pun intended)

Its great to see a different type of method being used. I love the branding and the unlimited possibilities that this logo has in store for the future.

This is a great design, and a very interesting animation. It is very persuasive of London being a place with lots to offer. It is not so much a logo, was it ever really intended for use on faxes and business cards? it does manage a reasonable degree of scalability. It also looks like a design that can evolve, produce infinite off shoots, but without losing its identity. It is a fun design, I could almost be persuaded to leave Cornwall.

This reply isn’t really aimed at the logo itself. But I found it very odd that the first 11 seconds show this clean, “fresh” style, when suddenly this video appears with birds in a yellow, smoggy skyline.

I’m wondering who came up with the idea to insert that footage and more importantly: why?

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